Among a trend of iPhone applications designed specifically for college students comes Sip.
Sip functions as an anonymous, photo-sharing news board that uses geolocation to target people in a specific area, such as a college campus. It’s a cross between Instagram and Yik Yak.
The idea is that students can post pictures of events around campus and instantly share them with app users without knowing the other people.
See a cool street performer on the way to class? Post it on Sip. Take a picture of that person sleeping in the library? People on Sip are bound to find it funny, too.
This idea, while great in theory, does not factor in the largest part of the equation: We are college students who primarily think with one organ, and it is not our brain.
While the crazed, sex-driven college student is indeed stereotypical, the recent pictures on UCA’s Sip feed further perpetuate this image.
Recently, the UCA Sip feed has exploded with pictures of young adults in various stages of undress, often showing genitalia and propositioning sexual favors from other users.
It is basically porn straight from your peers. These are students on our campus, people we sit next to in class and eat with in the Student Center.
I find this creepy. It is more than just random naked people; it makes it personal. You begin to think, “Wait, is that the chick from my Spanish class?”
Honestly, if I wanted to see you naked, I would just hook up with you. I would rather not be using an app on my phone, only to find your naked ass staring back at me.
The app also enlarges the already rampant “hook up” culture that exists at universities into something truly frightening. Through the app, people genuinely are losing self-respect by allowing literally anyone to view their bodies.
While I firmly believe it is your own body and your own right, why is it necessary to proposition yourself like an inanimate object? Posting pictures of yourself or others naked online degrades who you are as a person.
We have all probably heard the lectures since we were young. I vividly remember sitting in a middle school auditorium while presenters told us the story of how Cindy Lou decided to share a photo with her boyfriend and her life was ruined forever.
While I am not your mother and cannot stop you from advertising your body in this fashion, please realize that the word anonymous is a lie.
There are always ways of tracing photos back to their owners. Let me revert back to the well-known adage: Nothing you put on the Internet is private.
There is also the problem that this app is so accessible.
While designed for college campuses, this does not stop underage people who are in the proximity from viewing the images.
This has become a problem with other apps such as Yik Yak, which contains many posts designed for people over age 18. This material should not be available to younger viewers.
The app’s owners have made strides to prevent this rampant misuse by placing a friendly reminder that nude photos are not permitted.
However, it is impossible to regulate photos the minute they are uploaded, so the picture often sits there for hours before it is deleted.
In all honesty, this app will probably not go far. The stream of inappropriate photos has died down considerably in the past week as it seems most UCA students have found it lame to look at “dick pics” with the incredibly limited possibility of actually hooking up with the photographer.
Let’s face it, not many people are going to like what they see enough to actually try to have sex with a random person whose penis they saw on an iPhone app. Have some class, put some clothes on and maybe get to know people by more than how large their breasts are. It will be a better use of your time, I promise.